Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl Anthony Towns revealed on Wednesday that his mother is in a medically-induced coma due to COVID-19, and encouraged everyone to understand the severity of the disease.
In an emotional video that he posted on his social media accounts, Towns said that his mother now needs a ventilator to breathe as her lungs are deteriorating.
"We assumed my mom had COVID-19 just due to the symptoms she was exhibiting," said Towns. "I felt she was turning a corner, I felt we were heading in the right direction, (then) they said she went sideways."
"Things went sideways quick. Her lungs were getting worse, and she was having trouble breathing. They were just explaining to me that she had to be put on a ventilator… She's been in a medically-induced coma. It's rough," he added.
Both of Towns' parents had not been feeling well last week, and he immediately encouraged them to seek medical attention. His father remained quarantined at home, but his mother's situation took a turn for the worse, even with medication.
Towns said he was sharing his story "in the hopes that everyone stays at home."
"We need more equipment, and we need to help those medical personnel on the front lines," he said. "Thank you to the medical staff who are helping my mom."
Towns stressed the importance of social distancing, and made it clear that "this disease cannot be taken lightly."
"Please protect your family, your loved ones, your friends, yourself," he said. "It's deadly. It's deadly (but) we're gonna keep fighting. We're gonna beat it, we're gonna win. I hope my story helps."
Even before his mother's diagnosis, Towns had already donated $100,000 to the Mayo Clinic, to help increase their testing capabilities.
There are now over 50,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States, with 660
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